Changing of the Guard in the Consular Corps in Finland on 10 November 2023

Changes in world politics led to the closure of the Nicaraguan honorary consulate and the termination of the position of the Dean of Finland’s Consular Corps, Honorary Consul General Johan Grotenfelt. The new chairman of the Consular Corps in Finland Association and Dean,  Jukka Luostarinen, Honorary Consul General of San Marino, was elected on 27 October 2023.

As his last task as Dean, Johan Grotenfelt attended President Martti Ahtisaari’s funeral on 10 November 2023.  In that context he thanked Elina Valtonen, Minister of Foreign Affairs,  and Mika Koskinen, Chief of Protocol, for their indispensable cooperation. Johan Grotenfelt also had the opportunity to inform the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, Croatian ambassador Josip Buljević, about the changes in the Consular Corps. Ambassador Buljević was convinced that the good cooperation would continue and said that the diplomatic community appreciates the activities of the Consular Corps in Finland.

The new Dean Jukka Luostarinen started his duties on that very same day.

​Earlier this autumn, Johan Grotenfelt organized the trip of the Consular Corps in Finland to Stockholm to meet honorary consuls in Sweden on 14-15 September 2023. He also represented the Consular Corps of Finland, for example, at the reception of the protocol services of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the crypt of Helsinki Cathedral on October 3, 2023.

The Norwegian Consular Corps’ 50th anniversary celebrations brought Johan Grotenfelt to Oslo on 2-3 November 2023. Johan Grotenfelt represented the Finnish Consular Corps in the celebrations, which began in the afternoon of 2 November 2023, with a reception offered by the City of Oslo at Oslo City Hall, where the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded annually. About hundred members of the Norwegian Consular Corps and some forty ambassadors were present. Dean colleagues from Iceland, Estonia, Latvia, Denmark, Sweden and Norway were also present at the event.

Deans Liisi Karindi (Estonia), Fritz Schur (Denmark) and Johan Grotenfelt (Finland)

On the same evening, a dinner was organized in the festive hall of Oslo Militär Samfund. The programme included speeches, performances, and music. The dinner was attended by eighty of the approximately 150 members of the Norwegian Consular Association. Johan Grotenfelt had the honour of sitting next to Ambassador Tone Elisabeth Allers, Chief of Protocol at the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The next day, Dean of Norway invited the foreign guests and a few board members of the association to his home for dinner. Nikolas Margaropoulos, President of the Congress of the World Federation of Consuls (FICAC), was also present at the event.

Dean Kjetil Krane (Norway), Marianne Borgen, Mayor of Oslo, with Dean Johan Grotenfelt

In Oslo Johan Grotenfelt brought up the fact that international meetings perfectly expand consular activities and provide insights for future activities. In his speeches, Johan Grotenfelt also informed the attendants of the celebrations of the centenary of the Consular Corps in Finland on 9 May 2025.

The Chairman and Dean elect Jukka Luostarinen hosted Foreign Minister Valtonen at a luncheon organised by the Consular Corps in Finland at restaurant Gillet on 3 November 2023. Jukka Luostarinen warmly thanked the Foreign Minister for her talk and gave her Anu Bradford’s highly considered book Digital Empire as a gift.